Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Top 11 Beauty Faves of 2011

For those of you who may think you're lost... you're in the right spot.  This is indeed A Troop's Girl.  But as some of you know, I am a major beauty product junkie.  I love makeup, skincare, haircare... I'm obsessed with the stuff.  So, as many of you may blog about recipes and home DIY projects, I thought it would only make sense to share some of my beauty obsessions with y'all.

Here are my top 11 beauty products of 2011...

1.  MAC Smolder Eye Liner - This is a really rich-black liner that actually stays in the water line.  It's been around forever, but I've just discovered it in 2011 and have worn it nearly every day... and there's still a tiny stub of it left!

2.  Laura Mercier Silk Creme Foundation - I got super pale last winter and needed a new foundation that would work well with my skin that was extremely dry at the time.  I watched a couple YouTube reviews on it and bought it online without getting a color match.  This is a medium to full-coverage foundation that gives a luminous finish without looking too oily and keeps my dry spots from looking too flaky.  If I could only buy one foundation for the rest of my life, this would be it.

3.  Nars Deep Throat Blush - I have a lot of blushes.  But I've always been on the pursuit of the-perfect pink blush.  This is it for me!  It gives a wonderfully natural flush and lasts for most of the day on me.

(image from Temptalia)

4.  Urban Decay Naked Palette - I'm a sucker for eye shadow.  I've tried a million different brands from drugstore to upscale department stores.  I own a ton of shadows.  And most of them are neutrals.  I'm obsessed with neutrals, because you know, all browns are not created equal.  This palette has been out for a while and has been all over beauty blogs and YouTube .  I just picked it up last month (one for me and then later, one for my sister).  It is an awesome neutral palette.  The colors run on the warm side, so it may not suit you if you're more cool-toned.  But the colors have great payoff, are really finely-milled.  The only downside, is that some of the more sparkly shadows do have some fallout.  So, I usually have to clean up my under-eye area when I'm down with my eyes.  But other than that, this is an awesome neutral palette.

(image from Temptalia)

5.  MAC's 217 Eye Shadow Brush - Oh my gosh.  This is seriously the best eye shadow brush ever made.  It has a great density and the fibers are soft but maintain their shape well.  I use this for my crease and my outer-corner and use it every single day.  I own 3, so I don't have to clean it every day.  And if I could justify it, I'd have more!  If you want to invest in one good eye shadow brush, get the 217.  Heck, get 2!

6.  MAC Cultured Lipglass - As much as I've been obsessed with finding the perfect pink blush, the hunt for the perfect pink lipgloss has caused me to now own loads of lipgloss.  Literally, maybe a ton.  Anyway, for me, this is a perfect pink.  It rosy and bright, but not too pale.  You know, Kim Kardashian, pale.  This is not that.  This is really feminine and can be worn with a full-on smokey eye or just a simple neutral look.

7.  MAC Falsies Mascara - God did not give me great lashes.  I have itty-bitty ones that hardly hold a curl.  I've tried a billion mascaras in my life, and right now, this is my favorite.  MAC just came out with a really rich-black version of the original.  And it's totally awesome.

(image from Style Bakery Beauty)

8.  Paul Mitchell Skinny Serum - I have reasonably straight hair.  But I have some weird waves mixed in.  I've used this serum for a few years now and love it.  I work a few pumps in my hair before I blow dry.  It helps keep my hair straight and it also speeds up my drying time.  I'm not sure what's in this stuff.  But it's amazing, although a bit pricey.  I save up coupons from JCPenney and wait for this to go on sale in their salon.  Last time I got 2 bottles that resale for $17.99 each.  They were on sale for buy one, get one for 1 cent!!  And I had a $10 coupon.  So I got two bottles for about $8. 
9.  Peter Thomas Roth Gentle Complexion Correction Pads - Right after I had Grace, but skin went nuts.  As much fun as acne is when you're 15, it's even worse when you're in your 20s.  I use one of these pads, at night, right after I've washed my face.  It helps with whatever residue is left and has AHA and BHA's, which help dead skin cells and clogged pores.  This product smells great and leaves my skin feeling fresh, not dry, like so many toners and acne products do.

10.  Essie's Protein Base Coat - If you know me, you probably know that I always wear nail polish.  I do my nails about every 3 days.  So with that much polish and polish remover, my nails have started to peel.  This is a great base coat - it helps keep the polish from staining my nails and also helps to keep my nails healthy. 

11.  Estee Lauder Double Wear Concealer - Thanks to my two wonderfully awesome girls, I have dark circles.  And thanks to my labor with Grace, I have a dark vein that is now visible underneath one of my eyes.  I found this concealer this summer and have worn it every day since.  Even if the rest of my face is makeup free, I'll still put this on. 

Let me know what you think of my beauty picks & I would love to know what you're obsessed with!  If you would like more beauty-related posts in the future, leave a comment below or send me an email.


Erin said...

Ooh, I love mu posts, but that's because I used to have a makeup blog before my milspouse blog. ;)

What eye primer are you using? If you've got a really glittery shade, Fyrinnae's Pixie Epoxy is the way to go, although it's not toted as a primer.

I haven't picked up Naked 2 yet, but I want to. I love TheBalm Nude 'Tude for a more paler neutral palette - more work appropriate, better highlighters.

You need to check out the Walmart HD brushes, no lie. I have ditched most of my mid to high end brushes for Walmart HD and Ecotools.

EL Double Wear Light is one of my favorite every day foundations, and the original one is perfection with some setting powder! I haven't tried the concealer yet though.

Michelle said...

I'm not a huge fan of full-on foundation but I use Laura Mercier's hydrating primer and then her tinted moisturizer and it is an amazing combination.

Jill said...

Hey Erin - Thanks so much for your comment. Right now I'm using UD Primer Potion in Eden. I go between that and Too Face Shadow Insurance.
I'll have to check out Walmart's brushes... I didn't know that existed! :) Oh and I love EL foundation... I used to wear Double Wear but ran out... I may have to go and get color-matched.

Jill said...

Hi Michelle - I love LM's primers. I'm using the oil-free one right now and want to try the new illuminating one - I have heard good things about it. Have you ever tried a BB cream? I picked up the one by Boscia and it seems to give similar coverage to that of a tinted moisturizer.

Just_Megs said...

I see you're a MAC junkie, like myself, so I thought I'd share one of my personal favs. I LOVE their Studio Fix Pressed Powder. I use it by itself on days when I don't have time {{or desire}} to do my full routine. In fifteen seconds I go from my scary non-make-uped self to perfect! It has the coverage of foundation & powder in one. It's AmAzing!

Check it out!

Erin said...

Water line, fallout, finely-milled...I have no idea what you're talking about. I miss your girly face! Let's do coffee soon!

Michelle said...

Thank you, I'll have to try that Boscia cream! I never would've imagined Walmart would have good brushes, either! I use Urban Decay's primer in Eden as well and it is so awesome! I think it makes a good concealer on some spots, too.

Emmy said...

Oh I think I'm going to have to pun this post! I want to go out and buy it all!